Is Mascara Bad for Your Eyelashes?

Mascara wearer? We have the lowdown. Here's how to keep it from damaging your eyes

The truth about mascara and whether it's bad for your eyes

When it comes to beauty products women can’t live without, mascara often tops the list. Drawing attention to the eyes and opening up the lids, mascara is an essential when it comes to applying makeup. However, just because it can help enhance your natural features, does that mean that it’s 100% good for your lashes?

Many people wonder if mascara is bad for the eyelashes, and considering the fact that those of us who wear it tend to wear it on a daily basis, it’s a smart question to ask. Here is everything you need to know if you’ve been asking yourself about the potential harm mascara may cause your eyelashes.

Check Out the Ingredients

Mascaras are made with different ingredients depending on the shade and brand; however, if you’re using a mascara that is made from waxes, pigments, and iron oxides, you really should have nothing to worry about. These are the basic ingredients when it comes to mascaras, and they are harmless to the eyelashes.

Ingredients to Look Out For

If you find that your mascara contains retinal acetate, you’ll want to ditch it immediately. This harsh ingredient is actually banned in Canada and is linked to changes in the composition of cells when absorbed into the body.

Parabens, sulfates, and phthalate are three other substances that you want to stay away from when reading your mascara’s ingredient list, as they can irritate the eyes and cause inflammation.

Another ingredient that you should be on the lookout for is petroleum. While this is a common ingredient in many mascaras, it can actually cause slight allergic reactions on the lid and slow down the growth of your eyelashes.

Be Gentle When You Remove It

Just because you’re using a mascara with safe ingredients doesn’t mean that your eyelashes are in the clear. You’ll want to use a makeup remover to safely remove your mascara and avoid any rough pulling. This is especially important with waterproof mascaras, as they have a tendency to cling to the eyelashes and occasionally pull them out when not removed gently.

Don’t Let Your Lashes Dry Out

Because mascara coats your eyelashes, it can keep them from absorbing as much moisture as they need to be healthy and hydrated. One way to help prevent your lashes from drying out is to always be sure to remove your mascara at the end of the day.

You can also find eyelash conditioners that aid in hydrating the lashes and keeping them soft between mascara applications. Furthermore, some mascaras come with conditioning ingredients included in their formula, allowing you to hydrate and soften your lashes even as you wear mascara throughout the day.

Never Pump Your Mascara Tube

While it may be tempting to pump your mascara wand in and out of the mascara tube between applications, doing this actually leads to air entering the container. The problem with this is that the air ultimately aids in bacteria growth in the mascara tube.

On that same note, makeup wearers should toss their mascaras around every four months to avoid transferring bacteria from the mascara tube to the eyelashes.

Swap Your Mascara Type From Time to Time

When it’s raining, waterproof mascara is a great idea. However, that doesn’t mean that you have to wear waterproof mascara every day of the year. Because waterproof mascara is more difficult to remove from the lashes, it’s best to avoid using it unless you really need to. Sticking with a traditional, non-waterproof mascara will give you the same amount of color and eye-opening benefits without the process of a painful removal.

The Final Verdict

While some ingredients may be harmful to the eyes, generally speaking, mascara is not bad for your eyelashes. Of course, if you’re not careful during your mascara removal process, you may end up pulling a hair or two out from your lid’s root. However, by regularly replacing your mascara, utilizing makeup remover, and purchasing high quality mascaras with safe ingredients, you should be able to steer clear of any permanent lash damage.

Always check the ingredients in a mascara before applying it to your eyelashes. Additionally, be sure to only use mascaras that don’t cause your eyes any pain. If you find that your eyes are becoming dry or irritated from the mascara that you’re using, toss it immediately and remove any remaining mascara from your lids.

Resources— Popsugar, Girls’ Life, Stylecaster